Page images



Patience. She had no sooner placed herself by the mount of sorrows, but, what I thought věry remarkable, the whole heap sunk to such a degree, that it did not appear a third part so big as it was before. She afterward returned every man his own proper calamity, and, teaching him how to bear it in the most commodious manner, he marched off with it contentedly, being very well pleased that he had not been left to his own choice, as to the kind of evils which fell to his lot.

12. Besides the several pieces of morality to be drawn out of this vision, I learned from it never to repine at my own misfortunes, or to envy the happiness of another, since it is impossible for any man to form a right judgment of his neighbor's sufferings ; for which reason, also, I have determined never to think too lightly of another's complaints, but to regard the sorrows of my fellow-creatures with sẽntiments of humanity and compassion.





OMEN are armed with fans as men with swords, and

sometimes do more execution with them. To the end, therefore, that ladies may be entire mistresses of the weapon which they bear, I have erected an academy for the training up of young women in the exercise of the fan, according to the most fashionable airs and motions that are now practiced at court. 2. The ladies who carry fans under me are drawn up

twice a day in my great hall, where they are instructed in the use of their arms, and exercised by the following words of command:Handle your fans, unfurl your fans, discharge your fans, ground your fans, recover your fans, flutter


fans. 3. By the right observation of these few. plain words of command, a woman of a tolerable genius, who will apply herseli diligently to her exercise for the space of but one half-year, shall be able to give her fan all the graces that can possibly enter into that little modish machine. But to the end that my readers may form to themselves a right notion of this exercise, I beg leave to explain it to them in all its parts.

4. When my female règiment is drawn up in array, with every one her weapon in her hand, upon my giving the word to

handle their fans, each of them shakes her fan at me with a smile, then gives her right-hand woman a tap upon the shoulder, then presses her lips with the extremity of her fan, then lets her arns fall in easy motion, and stands in readiness to receive the next word of command. All this is done with a closed fan, and is generally learned in the first week.

5. The next motion is that of unfurling the fan, in which are comprehended several little flirts and vibrations, as also gradual and deliberate openings, with many voluntary fallings asunder in the fan itself, that are seldom learned under a month's practice. This part of the exercise pleases the spectators more than any other, as it discovers, on a sudden, an infinite number of cupids, garlands, altars, birds, beasts, rainbows, and the like agreeable figures, that display themselves to view, while every one in the régiment holds a picture in her hand.

6. Upon my giving the word to discharge their fans, they give one general crack that may be heard at a considerable distance when the wind sits fair. This is one of the most difficult parts of the exercise, but I have several ladies with me, who, at their first entrance, could not give a pop loud enough to be heard at the further end of the room, who can now discharge a fan in such a manner, that it shall make a report like a pocket-pistol.

7. I have likewise taken care (in order to hinder young women from letting off their fans in wrong places, or on unsuitable occasions) to show upon what subject the crack of a fan may come in properly: I have likewise invented a fan, with which a girl of sixteen, by the help of a little wind, which is inclosed about one of the largest sticks, can make as loud a crack as a woman of fifty with an ordinary fan.

8. When the fans are thus discharged, the word of command, in course, is to ground their fans. This teaches a lady to quit her fan gracefully when she throws it ăside in order to take up a pack of cards, adjust a curl of hair, replace a falling pin, or apply herself to any other matter of importance. This part of the exercise, as it only consists in tõssing a fan with an air upon a long table (which stands by for that purpose), may be learned in two days' time as well as in a twelvemonth.

9. When my female regiment is thus disarmed, I generally let them walk about the room for some time; when, on a sudden, (like ladies that look upon their watches after a long visit), they

[blocks in formation]

all of them hasten to their arms, cătch them up in a húrry, and place themselves in their proper stations upon my calling out, Recover your fans. This part of the exercise is not difficult, provided a woman applies her thoughts to it.

10. The fluttering of the fan is the last, and indeed the masterpiece of the whole exercise ; but if a lady does not misspend her time, she may make herself mistress of it in three months. I gěnérally lay aside the dog-days and the hot time of the summer for the teaching of this part of the exercise ; for as soon as ever I pronounce, Flutter your fans, the place is filled with so many zephyrs’ and gentle breezes as are very refreshing in that season of the year, though they might be, dāngerous to ladies of a tender constitution in any other.

11. There is an infinite variety of motions to be made use of in the flutter of a fan. There is the angry flutter, the modest flutter, the timorous flutter, the confused flutter, the měrry flutter, and the amorous flutter. Not to be tedious, there is scarce any emotion in the mind which does not produce a suitable agitation in the fan ; insomuch, that if I only see the fan of a disciplined lady, I know very well whether she laughs, frowns, or blushes.

12. I have seen a fan so věry angry, that it would have been dāngerous for the absent lover who provoked it to have come within the wind of it ; and at other times so very languishing, that I have been glad for the lady's sake the lover was at a sufficient distance from it. I need not add, that a fan is either a prude* or coquette, according to the nature of the person who bears it.



132. ANON.


F Anon but little is known, though his works are exces

sively numerous. He has dabbled in every thing. Prose and poëtry are ălike familiar to his pen. One moment he will

1 Dog-dāys, the days when Sirius gentle breeze; a light wind, and or the dog-star, rises and sets with particularly the west wind.

The dog-days commence 3 Tē' di oŭs, dull; tiresome from the latter part of July, and end the length or slowness. beginning of September.

4 Prude, (prod), a woman of afZephyr, (zef’ er), any soft, mild, fected or over sensitive modesty.

the sun.

be up the highest flights of philosophy, and the next he will be down in some kitchen-garden of literature, culling an enormous gooseberry, to present it to the columns of some provincial newspaper. His contributions are scattered wherever the English language is read. Open any volume of miscellanies' at any place you will, and you are sure to fall upon some choice little bit sighed by “ Anon.”

2. What a mind his must have been! It took in every thing, like a pawnbroker's shop. Nothing was too trifling for its grasp. Now he was hanging on to the trunk of an elephant, and explaining to you how it was more elastic than a pair of indiarubber braces; and next he would be constructing a suspension bridge with a series of monkeys' tails, tying them together as they do pocket-handkerchiefs in the gallery of a theater, when they want to fish up a bõnnet that has fallen into the pit.

3. Anon is one of our greatest authors. If all the things which are signed with Anon's name were collected on rows of shelves, he would require a British Muse'um all to himself. And yět of this great man so little is known that we are not even acquainted with his Christian name.

4. There is no certificate of baptism, no moldy tombstone, no musty washing-bill in the world on which we can hook the smallèst, line of speculation, whether it was John, or James, or Joshua, or Tom, or Dick, or Billy Anon. Shame that a man should write so much, and yet be known so little. Oblivion uses its snuffers sometimes very unjustly.

5. Ci second thoughts, perhaps it is as well that the works of A.. were not collected together. His reputation for consistency? would not probably be increased by the collection. It would be found that frequently he had contradicted himselfthat in many instances when he had been warmly upholding the Christian white of a question, he had afterward turned round, and maintained with equal warmth the Pagan' black of it. He might often be discovered on both sides of a truth, jumping boldly from the right side over to the wrong, and flinging big stones at any one who dared to assail him in either position.

Mỹs' cel la ný, a collection of agreement of the same thing with compositions, or writings, on various itself at different times. subjects.

Pā' gan, after the manner of Con sist en cỹ, harmony or those who worship false gods.

[blocks in formation]

6. Such double-sidedness would not be pretty, and yet we should be lēnient' to such inconsistencies. With one who had written so many thousand volumes, who had twirled his thoughts as with a mop on every possible subject, how was it possible to expect any thing like consistency? How was it likely that he could recollect every little atom out of the innumerableatoms his pen had heaped up? 7. Anon ought to have been rich, but he lived in an


when piracy: was the fashion, and when booksellers walked about, as it were,

like Indian chiefs, with the skulls of the authors they had 'slain hung round their necks. No wonder, therefore, that we know nothing of the wealth of Anon. Doubtless he died in a garret, like many other kindred spirits, Death being the only score out of the many knocking at his door that he could pay.

8. But to his immortal credit, let it be said, he has filled more libraries than the most generous pātrons of literature. The volumes that formed the fuel of the barbarians' bonfire at Alexandria* would be but a small book-stall by the side of the folios, quartos, octavos,' and duodecimos, he has pyramidized on our book shelves. Look through any catalogue you will, and you will find that a large proportion of the works in it have been contributed by Anon. The only author who can in the least compete with him in fecundity to is Ibid.

1 Lē' ni ent, mild; gentle; for. Quarto, (kwår' to), a printed giving

book next in size to a folio; so called 2 In nü' mer a ble, that can not be because originally there were four numbered.

leaves to each sheet. * Pi' ra cy, robbery on the high ? Oc tā' vo, a book of a size next seas; robbing another of his writings. below a quarto, much taller than it

* Alexăn' dri a, founded by Al. is broad; so called because originally exander the Great, in the year 332 it had eight leaves to a sheet. B.C., a celebrated city and seaport of 8 Dū'o děc' i mo, a book shaped Egypt. Its library surpassed all like an octavo, and next smaller in others of which the ancients could size. Originally it had twelve leaves boast, numbering seven hundred to a sheet, and hence the name. thousand volumes, a part of which * Pğr' a mid ized, piled up in the was destroyed by fire during the war form of a pyramid—a solid body, with Julius Cæsar; and the remain terminating in a point at the top, der by Caliph Omar, in the year 640. whose base is made up of straight

Fö'li o, a book made of sheets lines, and whose sides are triangles. of paper each folded once,


[ocr errors]

10 Fe cŭn' di ty; fruitfulness.


« PreviousContinue »